Reinventing AMTRAN as the smart choice.

by Eric Wolf, General Manager

Thursday, April 8, 2010 | Categories:

"AMTRAN is the smart choice. Take the bus!"  It’s been our slogan for almost 15 years. It’s part of our jingle. It’s on our buses and our schedules. People seem to like it and remember it. Congressman Bill Shuster once sang it for me.

Now we are in the process of reinventing AMTRAN so that we really are the smart choice for our customers.

Technology Now in Place

Our Smart Bus project put useful schedule information at our customers fingertips through their phone or on the internet. In less than 25 seconds, they can find out when their bus will be at their stop in real-time. Knowing when your bus will arrive takes a lot of anxiety out of using public transportation.

Great Customer Service

In a recent survey, Penn State Altoona students overwhelmingly rated AMTRAN bus drivers as very friendly and helpful. Our drivers are our front-line in delivering good customer service. We are very proud of these survey results. But we’re not satisfied. Our goal is to have everyone at AMTRAN - Board of Directors, drivers, mechanics, and managers - be genuine Customer Service Ambassadors.

Re-examining Bus Routes

With support from PennDOT, we worked with Gannett Fleming, a nationwide transportation consulting firm, to survey our customers and to help us adjust our routes to better meet their needs. Our customers want shorter, more direct trips to specific destinations. They don’t want to transfer to another bus, especially going to and from the grocery store.

We will be working with our drivers and with our customers in the coming months to help us adjust our routes to address these issues.

The Smart Choice

The economic outlook is uncertain. Gasoline prices are creeping back up again. Some things are out of our control. But there are things that we can do. Here at AMTRAN, to provide even better service for our customers, to be good stewards of the tax dollars that we receive, our rallying cry over the next 12 months will be to reinvent AMTRAN as the smart choice for our customers.